PwC plans to hire 10,000 Black and Latinx college students over the next five years.
The initiative is part of the accounting and consulting firm’s goal of reaching 35% Black and Latinx representation among its interns, entry-level hires, and experienced hires. PwC is seeking to build a workforce that more closely represents the diversity within higher education, according to the firm.
In line with the initiative, PwC has been fostering stronger relationships with historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs) to build a more diverse talent pipeline.
The company will also place more resources into retaining its diverse hires, with investments in digital training, upskilling, and mentorship.
One of PwC’s retention efforts is a student loan paydown program, which has paid off more than $40 million in student loan debt for 16,000 employees, including many people of color.
PwC has also committed $125 million to a digital upskilling program that helps young professionals keep pace with the evolving job market.
“Recruiters need to be in it for the long haul by identifying diverse talent earlier and help cultivate strong tech skills to prepare students to be competitive in today’s digital economy,” said Rod Adams, talent acquisition leader at PwC US.
The consulting firm will also ensure its hires have access to a robust mentorship and sponsorship network – giving young employees support at critical junctures in their career. PwC has mentorship and employee groups for Black, Latinx, Asian, women, and LGBTQ workers, among others.
Many consulting firms, and corporates generally, have accelerated their diversity initiatives following widespread protests last summer in response to the police murder of George Floyd, a Black man.
For many firms, this has involved creating new chief diversity officer roles, launching diversity councils, and re-evaluating policies and efforts in organizational diversity and inclusion.